Final message between Boris Johnson and Dominic Cummings revealed at COVID Inquiry before PM blocked


The final WhatsApp message between Boris Johnson and Dominic Cummings has been revealed at the COVID Inquiry.

Mr Cummings, who served as Mr Johnson‘s chief aide until November 2020, was giving evidence for several hours.

Towards the end of the session, one particular message was brought to light.

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Mr Cummings received the message from Mr Johnson on 15 November – two days after the aide left Number 10 for the last time.

Mr Johnson said: “You speak of briefings from team Carrie.

“She hasn’t briefed anyone and my instructions to all were to shut the f*** up. How is any of us supposed to know where these briefings come from?

“Look at the claims made on behalf of allies of Lee [Cain] and Dom, that I’m out in six months, that I can’t take decisions, that Carrie is secretly forging lockdown policy, and about a billion equally demented claims.

“Are you responsible for all that c**p? No. Then look at it from my point of view. This is a totally disgusting orgy of narcissism by a government that should be solving a national crisis.

“We must end this. That’s why I wanted to talk and see what we can jointly do to sterilise the whole thing. But if you really refuse, then that’s up to you.”

It appears that Mr Cummings did not respond.

Asked if there was an “orgy of narcissism” in the government he was part of, Mr Cummings said “certainly”.

Dominic Cummings leaving Downing Street
Dominic Cummings leaving Downing Street in November 2020

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The messages show that Mr Cummings blocked his former boss on WhatsApp in March 2021 – shortly before he appeared in front of a committee of MPs for the first time since leaving Downing Street.

These were not the only messages revealed to the inquiry which showed Mr Johnson was unhappy with his chief aide.

Following the revelation in 2020 that Mr Cummings had travelled to Barnard Castle while working in Downing Street, Mr Johnson sent a message to Number 10 aides in July 2021 which said: “Cummings a total and utter liar. He never told me he had gone to Durham during lockdown.

“I only discovered when the stories started to come out about Barnard Castle etc. I believed Mary Wakefield when she wrote a piece in spec giving impression they had been in London the whole time.

“He later claimed that he had told me but that my brain was so fogged by COVID that I didn’t register.

“It’s not true, I would have noted it.

“He never told me. I then tried my very best to defend him.”

Mr Cummings apologised several times for the language he used in messages released by the inquiry.

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It was revealed at one point how he spoke about Helen MacNamara, who was then head of the propriety and ethics team in the Cabinet Office.

Mr Cummings said in a message in 2020: “I don’t care how it’s done but that woman must be out of our hair – we cannot keep dealing with this horrific meltdown of the British state while dodging stilettos from that ****.”

He denied he was misogynistic, saying he was much ruder about men then he was “about Helen”.

“I agree that my language is deplorable, but as you can see for yourself I deployed the same or worse language [for] the prime minister, secretary of state or other people.”

As Mr Cummings’ evidence session ended, he apologised again to the inquiry.


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